Live Stream Mass Continues, Some Context
The priests at Jesuit High School have a long history of serving various works in New Orleans not named Jesuit. They offer Masses at parishes when the local clergy are short-handed and they serve other Catholic schools when the need arises. One way the priests lend a hand is to offer Masses at some local convents. These “conventual Masses” give religious order sisters the chance to have the Eucharist in their own chapels.
The Servants of Mary are a congregation of sisters trained in medical care. They’ve served New Orleans since 1914 by providing at-home care for the sick, usually overnight. The Jesuits greet the sisters’ early morning return home with 6:30 AM Masses at the sisters’ convent on Perlita Street. While this conventual Mass is primary for the Servants of Mary, many other religious sisters and a few lay people attend from time to time.
The Daughters of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary are one such congregation of sisters who occasionally attend Mass with the Servants of Mary. Founded in Viet Nam, this order of sisters have been serving New Orleans since 1986. Lately, Fr. Brown assists them by offering their private conventual Mass in their convent on Moss Street once a week.
Under the current circumstances, Archbishop Aymond has dispensed the faithful from the obligation to attend Mass, and he has asked that no public Masses be offered so as to limit the public’s exposure to the Cornonaviris. Private conventual Masses do not fall under this temporary rule. While Jesuits continue to offer Masses at the Servants of Mary convent privately, Jesuit priests have invited the Daughters of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary to Jesuit High School’s chapel to share their conventual Mass. Live-streamed over the internet at 7:15 in the morning on week days, the public can watch the Jesuits celebrate the private mass with the sisters and enjoy their beautiful singing, something previously dominated by male voices in that chapel. One might catch a glimpse of Brother Terry Todd ringing the bells as well.
In times like these, when the Eucharist is not readily available to the faithful and charity requires a change in personal devotions, it is a good practice to make an act of spiritual communion with the following prayer:
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
The Jesuits and friends continue to lift up the community in prayer as we continue our mission to provide a Catholic education, forming men of faith and men for others.